When it Comes to Condemnation and Eminent Domain Matters in Alabama, Beware of Lowball Offers
Property owners in Alabama should be aware of their rights when it comes to matters of condemnation and eminent domain. Essentially, eminent domain refers to the legal right or power the government has to take privately owned property and convert it for public use. The legal process and procedure used by public entities to use their power is called condemnation. A crucial aspect of the condemnation process is determining how much money the government will give to the property owner in exchange for their land. Rarely is the initial offer a fair or accurate amount, so let’s take a look at what you can do as soon as you receive the government’s initial offer to purchase your land.
Scrutinizing the Initial Offer
When you receive a condemnation letter offering a dollar amount for your land, you’ll notice how vague it is with nothing attached to show how the offer was calculated. If you ask for the government’s appraisal report and they refuse to give it to you, then you would be correct to be concerned that something is being hidden from you. An attorney experienced in condemnation cases is a valuable resource to avoid leaving a lot of money on the table.
It’s Happened Before
Like any other business or agency, the government will try to keep costs down during all phases of a project. This means that one of their frequently successful strategies is to pitch you a lowball offer, hoping that you’ll simply accept it without question. However, it is your right to push for more and many property owners across the country have successfully done so in the past. For example, a landowner in California was awarded $3.2 million dollars after an initial compensation offer of $1.8 million. Elsewhere, some property owners have fought back against initial lowball offers and received valuations that were ten times higher—and, in some cases, hundreds of times higher— than the initial offer.
Know Your Rights
If you are facing an eminent domain or condemnation matter in Alabama, get in touch with the reliable and experienced attorneys at Sewell Sewell Beard LLC. Call (205) 544-2350 today to get started.
No representation is made that the quality of legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers.